In Nova Scotia there are 40,710 children or close to 1 in 4 children (24.2%) who live in poverty based on the most recent data. The 2019 Report Card on Child and Family Poverty in Nova Scotia reveals that the percentage of children living in low-income circumstances in Nova Scotia has decreased 0.82% since the 1989 promise to end child poverty.
As primary author, Lesley Frank, Acadia University Professor and CCPA-NS Research Associate, states, “This year's report card marks the 30th anniversary of the promise to end child poverty, and for me, it marks twenty years of tracking the data. The status, and depth of child poverty in Nova Scotia deeply troubles me, so too the lack of progress on eradicating it compared to the rest of the country. Government action needs to follow the evidence. Children can't be made to wait."
Laura Fisher (’19), this year’s report card’s co-author and a master’s student at Acadia University, provides these reflections: “As a mother who has lived many years below the low-income measure, I know that these numbers represent so many real families and their stories. They represent stories of chronic stress and precarity as you wonder whether you can make it through the month, pay rent, pay for food, not to mention extra-curricular activities for your children.”
Fisher further reflects, “As a researcher, I see the way Nova Scotia is continuing to fall behind despite improvements in much of the rest of Canada. I had to check and re-check numbers because I couldn’t believe we were still so dismally failing children. It’s 2020 and time Nova Scotia stepped up to better support all families.”
Read the full media release from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, Nova Scotia Office.
The 2019 Report Card on Child and Family Poverty in Nova Scotia, can be downloaded free on the CCPA website.
Dr. Lesley Frank is a CCPA-NS Research Associate, Steering Committee Member of Campaign 2000, and an Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology at Acadia University. She has co-authored or single-authored the Child Poverty Report Card for Nova Scotia for 20 years. Dr. Frank researches in the area of family poverty, food insecurity, infant feeding, health inequity, and social policy. Preceding her academic career, she spent several years providing pre-natal services and family resource support to women living in low-income circumstances in the Annapolis Valley.
Laura Fisher is a recent Community Development Honours graduate, and current master’s student in the department of Sociology at Acadia University. She has focused her research on the social determinants of health for low income families, poverty, and social policy. A former doula and children’s program leader, she continues to be active in her community as an activist and advocate for social issues.